Mona was the best dog I could have ever dreamed of. She loved me unconditionally even at my worst and she was my world. Losing her has been the worst moment of my life.
Mona got into the trash on Thursday morning. My roommate and I wracked our brains and couldn’t think of anything in the trash that was too bad for her. She did seem particularly interested in an (empty) bacon wrapper container, plastic of which i found all over my bed. I didn’t really think twice about it, Mona was a dumpster truck and it probably wouldn’t affect her.
I came home Saturday morning to Mona who was looking extremely sad and sick with vomit everywhere. Whenever she drank water, she immediately threw it back up. I immediately set her up with an appointment at the animal urgent care, and called the ER, who said she could wait a couple hours for the appointment rather than me coming in now.
At Urgent Care, her tests came back very abnormal - ‘red’ on almost every level. She had fluid around her organs and they couldn’t quite tell what the issue was and that she required hospitalization as well as a complete ultrasound, so they referred me to Maine Veterinary Hospital. The tests run at Urgent Care totaled to $800.
At the hospital, they pulled me into an exam room and told me Mona was extremely sick. It could either be extremely severe Pancreatitis, or she could be Septic. Either way, she’d be in the hospital and the minimum I would owe would be $5,000 dollars. I agreed to pay, and took out a credit card for $3,000 just to cover the upfront deposit.
After 2 hours of waiting, they told me she was not septic, which meant she didn’t need surgery. I took this as very good news. They seemed optimistic that she was likely extremely dehydrated, which was adding to her symptoms. Her heart rate was at 280 when the normal level is 100 for a dog. They said they’d call in the morning if there were issues, but to go home and rest.
I woke up to a phone call from the vet. They said her heart rate was still extremely high and they couldn’t get it down. They had to put a feeding tube into her belly to get rid of the fluids building up in there. She was on ketamine, fentanyl, and lidocaine for the insane amount of pain she was in. She had to have a mainline put into her neck to take blood regularly. She was pricked and prodded and it didn’t even seem to be helping her much in the moment.
They told me she seemed to get worse overnight and that to fight this, she’d be “in it for the long haul”, that her medical costs would add up to $15,000-$20,000 if they went forward with treatment, and that she’d be in the hospital for up to a week - which also meant a week of more tubes, tests, and pain. I told them that simply wasn’t feasible for me. I bargained in my brain - maybe $10,000? But I’ll go bankrupt. But she’s worth every penny, and can I really put a price on her life?
I asked if she’s in pain. They said yes, she’s miserable. I asked if euthanasia should be introduced into the conversation. They said it would be completely justifiable to make that move. After consulting with my mom and crying harder than I ever have, I called them and told them I would like to move forward with that option and put her out of her misery. The vet said they agreed with that decision and it would be the kind thing to do. I got up and asked my roommate to drive me to the hospital.
Mona looked like a science experiment when they brought her in. Tubes, bandages, stitches. She looked extremely sick and in that moment I realized I was going the right thing. Mona and I shared our final moments together, she managed some kisses and we said goodbye.
Mona was the reason I got up in the morning. At the darkest times in my life, she was my reason to live. My heart has been shattered and I don’t know if I’ll ever be the same again. Everything I did revolves around me and her, and now I’m unsure how to continue. I’ve never cried so hard and so much in my life.
I greatly appreciate how much Mona’s community loved and cherished her. She was a friend to everyone, and loved like no other. She was so unique and bubbly, and a total little rascal. She was naughty and mischievous but she never had a malicious bone in her body. Everyone who met her instantly fell in love, and she would revel in that love and return it. She was perfect in every way and I can’t believe she’s gone.
On top of losing the love of my life, I am now settled with $6,000 of debt. I already have a lot of debt and pay about $700 dollars a month just in credit card bills and loans from school, not including the costs of living expenses, food, etc. I make a modest salary teaching high school kids and have a lot of trouble making it paycheck to paycheck. After taking out this credit card and borrowing money from my parents (who just lost their dog this week too and are now settled with $4,000 of vet bills), I am unsure how I will manage moving forward. I simply cannot afford anymore bills on top of what I already pay. I took the card out in desperation but now am unsure how I’m going to manage this new expense.
I have asked for money before I regards to vet bills in previous emergencies with Mona and Woody, and I really didn’t want to do it again. Our plan is to have a benefit concert sometime in January to help raise money, but I still have to make payments on these cards in the meantime. Anything that can go towards keeping me afloat and paying these bills will be helpful and life saving.
While letting Mona go was the right decision as she was in a lot of pain, it doesn’t make it easier or in this case, cheaper. I’d appreciate any help I can get, and I know Mona and I have a great community behind us who love and support us both. Thank you